Greetings. Because I couldn't find much about this subject besides asking when pet evolution will be added, I'm going to post my thoughts and ideas on it. I've been waiting a very long time, ever since Starbound was still in the alpha stage for pets. I've always been a sucker for pets in games, even if you have to care for them (which I actually enjoy). When they arrived in the beta stage, they were quite stupid AI wise (which is perfectly understandable and okay because it's still in beta). I was a bit disappointed that they would not be fleshed out for some time, and that they couldn't evolve yet. The awesome mod Smartpet fixes some of these issues but not all of them. Now, I'm going to talk about my ideas for monster evolution and fleshing out the pets. Keep in mind these are my ideas on it, and I'm not demanding or saying that any of these ideas NEED to be added. When replying, remember to be kind. Stages of evolution: Unlike in other games such as Pokemon, pets can evolve more than two times. This depends on the pet on rather it can evolve only once, or up to five times. Usually the monster will just have more developed parts that they already have, but sometimes, they will grow new parts, such as wings, and gain new abilities on evolution. Pets that you evolve into adulthood are stronger and learn more attacks. The first stage is infant, this is true for all monsters and their first form will always be an infant but will not be when they grow. The second to third stage of evolution is the "child" stage, they develop more, start to grow more matured parts (if applicable) like wings, but these are not functional yet. The third to forth stage is "adolescent" or "teenager", here they are almost adults, and they have almost fully matured. The second to fifth stage (yes, they can be adults by the second stage) is "adult", now they are fully matured, and will have become capable of most of their abilities they will gain, such as flight, or new attacks. However, during this stage, they can still learn new attacks, become stronger in attack and HP, and they can also breed (this will be talked about later). How to evolve your monsters: To evolve a monster, they must reach a certain level. By using a special gun on your monster, it will show their current health, damage, level and XP to next level. By defeating other monsters, your pet gains XP. Some monsters only evolve when leveled up in a certain climate. Paths of evolution: Monsters can sometimes, depending on the monster you tamed, evolve into separate "branches" of creatures. For instance, if a cold resistant baby was leveled up in a hotter area, it would gain heat resistance, and maybe even learn how to breathe fire or ice-fire. It's appearance would change drastically as well, gaining more hardened scales. But if the baby was continued to be raised in a cold environment, it's coat would thicken (if it had one) and get feet adapted to climbing and it's cold-oriented powers would become stronger. Then when it evolves, once, if it is raised in a different environment (or under certain other conditions) it would evolve differently. Of course, some, often most monsters would have a set path of evolution decided when they are generated. If monsters are treated with care they will protect you more vigorously (more on care later), but if you didn't care for your monster very well, it may not attack your foes, or even help them attack you. Breeding: Once you have a fully evolved monster, you can take a monster of the same species and breed it with yours to produce an egg/baby/other weird alien thing. If you have sufficient technology you can even crossbreed species under certain conditions and end up with a hybrid. The bonus for doing this is that they will inherit certain things from their parents, allowing for even more powerful monsters. Genetic modification: Who DOESN'T love modifying your pet dog so it grows 20 legs? With the right technology, you can modify an unborn monster! Here's how: Egg: Take the egg and put it in the machine, open the GUI and edit to your content. Live baby: Take the mother to the machine and do some linking so you can modify the forming baby. Spores or whatever else you can think of: Take it to the machine, insert it and edit! Now, the things you can edit include what attacks they have (this can be edited by gathering genes from monsters using a special item), their appearance (up to a certain point), see their evolution paths and even create your own if you have upgraded the station. You can, with the right materials, make a monster go insanely fast using this, or jump really high, or even fly without wings. This is a very fun aspect of the idea, I find. Bio-engineering your very own creature: After getting to tier 10, you can make a machine that allows you to create creatures from scratch. You can edit literally EVERYTHING from their parts to their evolution stages. Even their voice clips can be changed. You have a certain amount of creation points so that you cannot create a godmonster and slaughter everyone in a few seconds, however (perhaps the amount of creation points can be changed in a config option). After finishing and creating your creature, the egg, live baby or whatever else will pop out for you to have, you will have to capture it, but you can capture it regardless of it having half health or not. Hatching eggs: If you have an egg, and it needs hatching, craft an incubator and place the egg inside. After some time, the egg will hatch into a baby, which can then be captured. The appearance of the egg can be changed when genetic modifying or bio-engineering. Caring for your pet (up for debate): (note: because I am aware that most people do not care for raising or having to care for an animal in most games, this is up for you guys or the developers to decide should it be implemented) Like any pet, they need care. This means you must provide a place for them to sleep, a meal from time to time, training and play. While in a chest, and nowhere but your inventory, they will not lose any hunger or any other of the care stats over time. You can let them roam around your house/base by using a behavior changing item that will cause them to wander, follow, or stay put. A happy and well cared for pet will exceed in battle, but a neglected, unfed pet will do bad. Take care of your pet, and they will take care of you. Misc changes: A return option for returning pets. Making pets teleport to you across the planet, and even into your spaceship. Maybe the pet is returned to you whenever you are not on the planet or same area as you. Make capture pods with pets in them stay on the ground infinitely. Make pets avoid hazards. I posted some monster behavior ideas before on an update thread, I'm reposting them here as well: 1: Monsters that run away when they see you. 2: Monsters that run away when you get too close. 3: Monsters that attack when you get too close. 4: Monsters that attack when you continue to follow them. 5: Monsters that follow, but not attack you for a short period of time, then stop. 6: Monsters that hide and then attack you. 7: Monsters that stalk you, by hiding offscreen. 8: Monsters that attack when you are holding food. 9: Monsters that follow you endlessly while you are holding food. 10: Monsters that "beg" for food by making sounds. 11: Monsters that attack, but only after giving you a warning (roaring, growling, ect.) a few times. 12: Monsters that attack when you get too close to their young. 13: Monsters that have a territory, which, if you are in, they will then attack on sight, warn you, or chase you away. 14: Monsters that attack when you mine/step on/get close to their nests. 15: Monsters that attack out of hunger (these types of monsters have a hidden hunger bar, which depletes slowly, when half way they start hunting out creatures, including you). 16: Monsters that are friendly to you if you have a pet. 17: Monsters that are friendly only if you have a pet of their species. 18: Monsters that attack if you are holding capture pods (smart creatures). 19: Monsters that run if you are holding capture pods. 20: Monsters that attack when you attack one of their kind. 21: Monsters that attack when you attack ANY creature. 22: Monsters that are curious, and will inspect and hang around objects the player has made. 23: Monsters that will defend the player and any other creature that is being attacked. 24: Monsters that will eat your crops and then: A: Run away if they see you. B: Only run away if they have finished all the crops they can find. C: Will attack you when they see you. 25: Monsters that learn from the player. They can learn to open doors, use switches, dig, harvest crops, learn how to block shots, and parry/block melee attacks. These monsters are rare, and can be hostile, passive, or any of the other behaviors I've mentioned before. 26: Monsters that "scan" your gear, and decide to fight, flee, or stay in place. 27: Monsters that like to hoard things. They will pick up anything you drop, and will sometimes collect things from non-player made chests and bring them back to their hoard. These monsters spawn with a hoard which is a small cave. There is a storage container that looks like a pile of junk, where they bring hoarded things. If you steal something from this they will attack I put it in a spoiler tag to shorten the post up a bit. Thanks very much for reading this entire thing! It means a lot, please reply when you can, as I really enjoy feedback. If you have anything to add, go ahead, but remember to be kind when doing so. Report any issues in my post as well, or things that I missed.